On November 18–21, U.S. regulators attended the American Conference Institute’s 30th International Conference on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), where they discussed the near-record amount of FCPA penalties in 2013 and disclosed that there are more than 150 ongoing FCPA investigations. Regulators from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also explained new developments in cross-border cooperation as well as their efforts to prosecute individual FCPA defendants.
Every day, all over the world, ordinary people bear the cost of corruption. In many countries, corruption affects people from birth until death. In Zimbabwe, women giving birth in a local hospital have been charged US$5 every time they scream as a penalty for raising false alarm. In Bangladesh, the recent collapse of a multi-story factory, which killed more than 1,100 people due to a breach of basic safety standards, has been linked to allegations of corruption.
A US Navy Commander was arrested last week on charges related to bribery. Allegedly, Commander Michael Vannak Khem Misiewicz accepted bribes including free travel and hotel stays, concert tickets, and prostitutes from defense contractor Leonard Glenn Francis, whose Singapore-based company Glenn Davis Marine Asia Ltd. provides various services such as tugboats, fuel, and waste removal to a number of Asian ports. Misiewicz provided classified military information in exchange, allegedly telling Francis details about Navy vessel movements and schedules, and helping to ensure that ships would arrive in the ports wherein Francis’ company had contracts.